Ten Reasons to Hope When Things Go Bad
Where can we turn when things go really bad? As great as our friends, coworkers, and family are, eventually every one of them will let us down in some way or another, even if their intentions are good. As close as we get to our spouse or siblings, they can’t really understand the pain we are experiencing. And as much as we try to improve ourselves via self help books or just toughing things out by our own willpower, it just doesn’t seem to work.
If you’ve been trying to tough things out on your own, maybe it’s time to consider what it would mean if God became part of your life. Consider these implications if God really exists:
- God is truly in control. If God is God, then nothing happens apart from His knowledge and permission. While it is difficult to imagine why God allows some painful things to happen, His character, revealed in the Bible and through the testing of generations, leads us to the conclusion that He is willing and able to sustain you during the worst of times. We were crushed and completely overwhelmed, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we learned not to rely on ourselves, but on God who can raise the dead (2 Corinthians 1:8,9).
- There is an eternal life to come. What we suffer now is nothing compared to the Glory He will give us later (Romans 8:18). He will keep you strong right up to the end, and He will keep you free from all blame on the great day when our Lord Jesus Christ returns (1 Corinthians 1:8).
- The story isn’t finished yet. Time after time, the Bible records hopeless situations that ultimately ended in victory. Think of Job’s sickness, Joseph’s betrayal by his brothers, David’s adultery, and the many who were healed in mind, body, and spirit. But Joseph told them, “Don’t be afraid of me. Am I God, to judge and punish you? As far as I am concerned, God turned into good what you meant for evil. He brought me to the high position I have today so I could save the lives of many people.” (Genesis 50:19,20).
- God has not given up on you! Don’t give up on Him. “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11).
- There is likely purpose in your pain. Ask God to reveal His purpose in allowing this difficulty in your life. That’s a legitimate question to ask. Often, the answer comes in the process of dealing with your circumstance. Dear brothers and sisters, whenever trouble comes your way, let it be an opportunity for joy. For when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be strong in character and ready for anything (James 1:2-4).
- You are loved! Even the most unlovable person in the world is actually loved so much by God, that He let His Son die a terrible death to restore their relationship. God does love you! He sees your pain and weeps with you. He has sent Me to comfort the brokenhearted and to announce that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He has sent Me to tell those who mourn that the time of the Lords’ favor has come, and with it, the day of God’s anger against their enemies. To all who mourn in Israel, He will give beauty for ashes, joy instead of mourning, praise instead of despair. For the Lord has planted them like strong and graceful oaks for His own glory (Isaiah 61:1-3).
- Your prayers are heard. You parents – if your children ask you for loaf of bread, do you give them a stone instead? Or if they ask for a fish, do you give them a snake? Of course not! If you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give good gifts to those who ask Him? (Matt. 7:9,10)
- You are not facing this alone. For God has said, “I will never fail you. I will never forsake you.” That is why we can say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper, so I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?” (Hebrews 13:5,6)
- Others have made it through – you can too. Try to connect with others who have gone through similar situations. You will find hope, strength and encouragement. A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. (Ecclesiastes 4:12).
- Reach out to someone else who’s struggling. Place your focus on someone else and invest your life in him or her. You may discover that your peace of mind is found in being a source of hope for another. All praise to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. He is the source of every mercy and the God who comforts us. He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When others are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us (2 Corinthians 1:3,4).
Take a look at your life. How would you describe it? Contented? Rushed? Exciting? Stressful? Moving forward? Holding back? For many of us it’s all of the above at times. There are things we dream of doing one day, there are things we wish we could forget. In the Bible, it says that Jesus came to make all things new. What would your life look like if you could start over with a clean slate?
Living with hope
If you are looking for peace, there is a way to balance your life. No one can be perfect, or have a perfect life. But every one of us has the opportunity to experience perfect grace through a personal relationship with God through His Son, Jesus Christ.
You can receive Christ right now by faith through prayer. Praying is simply talking to God. God knows your heart and is not so concerned with your words as He is with the attitude of your heart. Here’s a suggested prayer:
Lord Jesus, I want to know you personally. Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins. I open the door of my life to you and ask you to come in as my Savior and Lord. Take control of my life. Thank you for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Make me the kind of person you want me to be.
Does this prayer express the desire of your heart? You can pray it right now, and Jesus Christ will come into your life, just as He promised.
Is this the life for you?
If you invited Christ into your life, thank God often that He is in your life, that He will never leave you and that you have eternal life. As you learn more about your relationship with God, and how much He loves you, you’ll experience life to the fullest.